Fathers, Sons and Hall of Fame

Really fun story from pal Danny Knobler on Mariano Rivera III.

In the story, he mentions that according to Hall of Fame research there have been eight sons of Hall of Famers who have played in the big leagues. So, of course, I had to go look them up because the Washington Nationals game here just got rained out. As Danny knows, there’s NO CHANCE with a rainout that I wouldn’t take on some stupid project like that.

And when I looked it up, well, I count 10:

1. Hall of Famer: Earl Averill (48 WAR)
Son: Earl Averill Jr. (3.5 WAR)

2. Hall of Famer: Yogi Berra (59.5 WAR)
Son: Dale Berra (5.4 WAR)

3. Hall of Famer: Eddie Collins (123.9 WAR)
Son: Eddie Collins Jr. (-1.0 WAR; 299 plate appearances)

4. Hall of Famer: Tony Gwynn (68.8 WAR)
Son: Tony Gwynn Jr. (5.8 WAR)

5. Hall of Famer: Freddie Lindstrom (28.3 WAR)
Son: Chuck Lindstrom (2 plate appearances)*

*Chuck Lindstrom holds the major league record for batting average (1.000), on-base percentage (1.000), slugging percentage (3.000) and OPS (4.000). In his one game, he walked and tripled. He scored a run and drove in a run.

6. Hall of Famer: Connie Mack (5.5 WAR, won 3,731 games as a manager)
Son: Earle Mack (16 plate appearances, called up in three different seasons)

7. Hall of Famer: Jim O’Rourke (51.3 WAR)
Son: Queenie O’Rourke (115 PAs in lone season. Yale man. Great name, too).

8. Hall of Famer: Tony Perez (53.9 WAR)
Son: Eduardo Perez (1 WAR, but more 2,000 PAs)

9. Hall of Famer: George Sisler (54.5 WAR)
Son: Dick Sisler (7.9 WAR)
Son: Dave Sisler (3.0 WAR, pitcher, won 38 and saved 28)

10. Hall of Famer: Ed Walsh (63.2 WAR)
Son: Ed Walsh Jr. (pitched in 79 games in four-year career).

I’m pretty sure that’s right — there have been 10. I would say Dick and Dave Sisler, Eduardo Perez, Tony Gwynn and Dale Berra have had the best careers for sons.

By the way, there has only been one Hall of Fame son, so far:

Father: Sandy Alomar (10.6 WAR)
Hall of Famer: Roberto Alomar (66.8 WAR)

You could count Cal Ripken since his father did manage in the big leagues, though he never played.

Father: Cal Ripken (managed in big leagues)
Son: Cal Ripken Jr. (95.5 WAR)

Soon, though, Ken Griffey Jr. will go into the Hall.

Father: Ken Griffey (34.4 WAR)
Son: Ken Griffey Jr. (83.6 WAR)

And perhaps someday Barry Bonds will go into the Hall.

Father: Bobby Bonds (57.7 WAR)
Son: Barry Bonds (162.4 WAR)

And a few other intriguing Hall of Fame possibilities, just for fun.

Father: Tim Raines (69.1 WAR — will BBWAA finally vote him in?)
Son: Tim Raines Jr. (174 plate appearances)

Father: Bruce Bochy (3 World Championships — he will get into the Hall)
Son: Brett Bochy (3 big league games as a pitcher so far)

Father: Jose Cano (3 big league starts, 1 excellent home run derby outing)
Son: Robinson Cano (52.4 WAR at age 32)

Father: Maury Wills (39.6 WAR — I think he gets elected someday)
Son: Bump Wills (16.5 WAR — better career than I remembered)

Father: Pete Rose (79.1 WAR … Nah)
Son: Pete Rose Jr. (16 PAs, 2 hits)

Update: Thanks to Ross Newhan — or someone commenting for Ross — we have a new one.

Father: Ross Newhan (superb baseball writer, winner of Hall of Fame’s Spink Award)
Son: David Newhan (1,000-plus plate appearances, 8-year career, now a coach).

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